Monday | Day One

We start the workshop at 11am, running through a presentation on storytelling travel photography while sitting in a shady part of Luxembourg Gardens.  I’ve been restless all morning leading up to this point, filled with excitement, because I get to spend the week doing what I love more than anything else… I get to teach.

It is overcast when we start, with a light sprinkling of rain that comes and goes.  We use the grey skies to emphasis the importance of finding interesting subjects and moments when you don’t have great light to work with.  Our explorations take us through the park, to a cafe for lunch, and then on to visit a church.  Our journey then takes us through the streets of Paris, down to and across the Seine.  

The clouds parted as we arrived at the Louvre and we were bathed in warm sunshine, providing the opportunity to focus on incorporating interesting light into our photographs.  The evening ended with a wonderful sunset / blue hour shoot at the Louvre, capping off an 11 hour day spent behind the lens.  

There are times when you fight the camera all day long, where you can’t make an interesting photograph to save your life.  Other days however, days like this one, gift you with interesting images around every corner.  These are the times I live for as a photographer and it was wonderful to share them with my students.

Here is a set of of images from the day.  I hope you enjoy them.



Click here to view part five of this series

Sunday | Explorations

I slept late, waking up to the morning light streaming through an open window, sounds coming from the city streets below.  It was hot when I walked out of the apartment building, already 26 degrees.  It didn’t matter.  I was in Paris, with the entire day ahead of me to explore my favourite city.  I walked without destination or purpose.  18,470 steps later, I finished the day on a patio where I enjoyed a lovely dinner before retiring for the night.

It was a perfect day.

Click here to read part four of this series

Saturday | Fatigue | Movement

We are stopped at the exit by a soldier, weapon slung across his chest, who informs us that there is an unattended package being examined to ensure that it isn’t an explosive device.  He looks young, but his eyes reveal an experience beyond his years.  Everyone around us remains calm, seeming to accept what has become the new norm for international travel in many parts of the world.  We circle around to another exit, find the taxi stand, and soon we are en route to Paris.

Spencer and I have both been here many times, however the thrill of a Parisian cab ride never gets old.  The conversation is boisterous, speed limits and lane markers are ignored as often as they are followed, and in no time at all we are at our Air B’n’B for the week.

I make the mistake of sitting down for a few minutes and the fatigue hits immediately.  I have been up for 19 hours at this point, drained by the 10 hour flight and the rigours of travel.  We hit the streets of Paris, ostensibly to find food and explore, but for me it really is just about staying awake right now.  You have to power through that first day, forcing yourself to absorb the 9 hour time difference and adjust your clock right away.  

I walk the streets of Paris, streets I have walked many times in the past, without focus or intent.  My camera somehow still makes it up to my eye though, my subconscious seeing photos even when I am not. 

We walk for hours, shooting well into dusk, and then finally we make our way back home.  Tomorrow, after a good night’s sleep, the week begins for real.  

I can’t wait.

Click here to read part THREE of this series